RecycleMania 2013

Photo: fordham.edu

Stephanie Gresham

Copy Editor 

The 2013 RecycleMania is, once again, in progress here at L&C.  RecycleMania is a friendly competition for college and university recycling programs.  Each spring, colleges throughout the United States and Canada collect all recycling and trash and report results over an 8-week period.

The contest keeps track of three particular categories: (1) who recycles the most on a per capita basis, (2) which schools have the best recycling rate as a percentage of total waste, and (3) which schools generate the least amount of combined trash and recycling.

The RecycleMania competition has four over goals:

  • Motivate students and staff to increase recycling efforts and reduce waste generation.
  • Generate attention and support for campus recycling programs.
  • Encourages colleges to measure and benchmark recycling activity in their effort to improve their programs over time.
  • Have a fair and friendly competition.

This year’s competition began February 3. As in previous years, L&C’s primary source of rivalry is SIUE. Scores are posted each Friday for the previous week at Recyclemaniacs.org.  Tracking continues through April 5 with final results being announced April 12.

In 2012, L&C reported a total of 6820 pounds of recycling and trash throughout the eight-week competition.  Week three results were reported March 1 revealing the current total to be a low 1700 pounds in comparison with last year’s week three total of 2676.

Including students, staff and faculty, L&C has a total population of 4835 persons. As of March 1, we have reported 0.35 pounds per person, down from last year’s 0.57.

In comparison, SIUE has a total population of 15,056.  Their results, as of week three, reveal a total of 1.57 pounds per person with 22,080 total pounds.

According to Nate Keener, L&C Director of Sustainability, “Recycling is sometimes an overlooked and underappreciated aspect of sustainability, and yet in many ways it is one of the most important. In seeking to remake the world in a way that allows us to maintain production/consumption cycles for at least seven generations, we often forget that fully half of the production/consumption cycle involves figuring out what we’re going to do with the waste and byproducts we generate. Recycling enables us to complete a circle whereby our consumption feeds right back into our production.”

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